For the past 9 months or so we have been covering and updating you on the case of James Slatic and his family and the ordeal they have been going through. Among the ups and downs that began with a massive raid on James’ extract company in early 2016, authorities in San Diego have put the Slatic family through the ringer, threatening jail time and refusing to give back what amounted to almost $400,000 that was confiscated from them.
Although the District Attorney in San Diego was eventually ordered by a judge to return about $100,000 that authorities took from the family bank accounts, James and others were soon after charged with multiple felonies in connection with the raid. Since then, the charges against James were greatly reduced and now comes word that San Diego county has decided to return another almost $300,000 to Slatic, the money that was confiscated during the raid from the business itself.
“While relieved to be done with the ordeal,” James told The Marijuana Times, “this nightmare has taken two years of time, hundreds of thousands in legal costs, and put 35 hardworking employees out of a job. The so-called ‘war on drugs’ continues. We were a legal, licensed business under local and California law, and were destroyed by an overzealous District Attorney. It can happen again.”
For now, James told us he plans on trying to rebuild his life and career in the industry. Obviously, how difficult that will be is anyone’s guess, but it didn’t have to be this way. With the return of James’ assets, authorities are basically admitting that this was all a waste of time and resources. What was accomplished? As James pointed out, a business was destroyed and 35 employees lost their jobs; what was the point?
Or maybe this is a case of law enforcement and prosecutors performing actions that were blatantly wrong and when they ran out of options, they gave up. They really believed that this case would result in a large amount of cash seized and people behind bars for many years to come.
In reality, however, all that is left is dozens of lives destroyed or derailed. No one was served or protected; no dangerous criminals are off the streets. Just a family business ruined for no reason in a state where they operated legally and that legalized marijuana for adult use just about a year ago.